Bing Blog

An open letter to Freddie and Fannie


Dear Kids,

Just a few thoughts on what you can expect when Uncle Sam takes over. It's not going to be all that bad. But things will be different with your new proprietor, and it never hurts to be prepared for a brand new corporate culture.

First, you're going to have a lot more paperwork. Oh, I know you think you've had a lot so far, but you ain't seen nothing yet. Financial institutions sort of invented the stuff. Add a layer of government on top of that and you're going to put the entire logging industry back on its feet. This is because, while large corporate bureaucracies always drive accountability to wafer-thin levels -- spreading it out over the entire system if they can -- nobody does this better than the Feds. Trying to ascertain who made a decision on an issue is like trying to figure out which bee just irrigated a specific chamber in the hive.

Second, your lunch hours will be shorter, and your workday more regularized. Did you ever read a book about the Siberian gulag, what life was like there? Well, it's not quite as cold, but not so different. Wake up. Go to the rock pile. Go home. Wake up. Go to the rock pile. You'll get used to it.

On the other hand, instead of being an employee per se, you will, in fact, be part of a permanent government that rules this nation year-in, year-out regardless of who is in power at the top. Your uber-bosses will change and new ones will arrive who are pretty much the same as the old ones. This is different than corporate life, where eccentricity often confers power. Your immediate managers will be Commissars three levels down from the politicians who pass in and out of government agencies like tumbleweeds over the tundra. They will never go away. But the chance of finding them on a golf course while the bank is burning down is minimal.

You will, of course, have to sell your snappy outfits, tasty footwear and juicy ties and scarves. Go to your local big-box clothing store. Acquire three gray suits. Ties may be in black or gray, and keep the patterns to yourself. A pair of enormous black shoes will complete the ensemble.

Did I mention that if you had an expense account you just lost it? I'm not sure how many of you Freddies and Fannies do lunch. I don't usually see you out and about. But from here on in, you can break out your attache case, because it's going to have a permanent PB&J in it or, if you are on the west coast, something with sprouts.

Contrariwise, you can also kiss those long, frenzied weekends and ruined vacations and holidays goodbye. Government workers are not encouraged to do overtime, and they go home at 5:00 p.m. unless the Martians have just landed and some form of response is necessary. Just look at the way they handled Katrina. It's not like they didn't get down there, eventually. They just did it on Government time.

On the whole, it won't be a huge shock, I don't believe, to move from corporate governance to government corporatude. It might even be an improvement. I mean, how much fun are you having right now anyhow?

Stay in touch. Don't forget to write. In triplicate, if possible.

Luv ya,


15 Comments Add Comment

Middle and lower income people are the most threatened; because, they pay taxes.

Past Presidents manipulated the "ALTERNATIVE MINIMUM TAX" so that those who became subject to it will pick up a bigger portion of the tax tab.

The savvy speculators, who liposuction off profits from complex compound funds, make them disappear.

The "ANOREXIC CARCASS" created by them is left to be rehabilated by taxpayers.

Originally, A.M.T. was an add on tax for the rich to make them pay their fair share.

In 1986 under "REAGAN", Congress repealed the add on tax completely. Under the "TAXPAYER RELIEF ACT" OF 1986", "REAGAN" altered the A.M.T. from an add on tax, completely replacing with the "REGULAR TAX".


Exemptions, till today, are not adjusted for inflation.

A.M.T.'s highest tax rate is 28%, those with a higher tax rate do not pay A.M.T. tax.

In 2000 Congress voted to abolish the A.M.T. and "PRESIDENT, BILL CLINTON" vetoed it???

In 2005, the "PRESIDENT'S TAX ADVISORY COUNCIL" reported to "PRESIDENT BUSH" that the A.M.T. is "NOT FAIR-SIMPLE-EFFICIENT"; reform was recommended; however it wasn't what "PRESIDENT BUSH" wanted to hear.

We the people get the "ANNUAL PATCH". Those, "THE PRIVILEGED" get absolved.

Big changes are coming to people that will effect their lifestyles.

The smart ones will roll with the punch and develop new hobbies and interests. Going green, being thrifty, staying close to home and improving the old neigbourhood may just be the answer to give people a new sense of mental well being.

Enjoy life while you can, nobody has been able to do it twice.

Fannie Mae is like the wicked witch of the west, and the failing financial sector is the water. I'M MELTING! I'M MELTING! NO! Only, this time when she melts dorothy is screwed. And her house fell on Freddie Mac, the wicked wizard of the east!

And don't forget that as US government employees you'll now be getting a nice, defined benefit pension and guaranteed healthcare when you retire. See, that wasn't so bad, was it?

You forgot to mention the part about NOT TAKING RISK!

The primary focus of your new job is to STAY EMPLOYED until you qualify for the U.S. Government Pension. No more 401k worries, no more company stock options. If you don't get fired, you will retire in style.

You don't need a promotion to earn your way to a more comfortable retirement, you don't need to stand out from your co-workers.

You can't be fired unless you do something differently than the way you did it before. If you just do the same things the same way, you can't be fired.

Show up, do as little as possible, prosper.

well first off if the Government set this up then they should be running the but bush should not have any say in it he has messed things up too much already and last Government time is every tax payers time we write there paycheck with our tax dollars
so.So all this were working on it
or what ever they say dont mean anything.

Hey, kids, just remember that your daddy can use overstatements with the worst of them. That doesn't mean he doesn't love you. Just keep in mind that's he's just that's he's as opinionated as the rest of us,


a 68-year-old city public library employee who often works overtime, with no pay, and who has formed, over the long decades she has worked to help people find the information they seek in public libraries,a bristling, opinionated kneejerk reaction against opinionated people who, with one kneejerk, accuse all public employees of yawning away the tax dollars they begrudge us.

Who gets the golden parachute on this one?
The sad part is that it's our gold they will be spending in the"south of France", when we will be in the "south of Indiana" trying to find some way to recover from their need of greed.
It's the same old story....To hell with profit.....lets make a killing. Well it came back to bite them and put some of "them" into an early, non manipulative, but rich retirement.
Their " retirement " should be in the state of New York. Sing-Sing comes to mind.
As an added note, I'm getting tired of trying to de-sypher econospeak. "Subprime" comes to mind. Enough of the Yale smokescreens. English or(Spanish)Please, so that we can follow your every crooked path.

Funny Blog, Bing.

Cheap shot, Stanley. As a former government employee who sold out for the big bucks of the private sector, I can tell you that I worked harder and longer, on more important issues, and got a greater sense of satisfaction from my government employment. If you judge yourself and others by the clothes they wear and the restaurants they frequent, then I guess you're cool enough to write a blog for Fortune. But if you want to actually work for a living, then public service is a pretty fulfilling way to go. Maybe you should try it sometime, before talking down to all those who walk the walk.

Sure, I know your blog is supposed to be sarcastic; but it's also insulting in this case.


I'd like to apologize to anybody in the public sector who was offended by this. Seriously. I know most of you work hard. I don't know what came over me. Perhaps I was confusing you with your bosses.

You've got it wrong about the guberment. The goobs -- at least those in DC -- love their long lunches, especially during summer-intern season. Nobody complains because they're either a fellow goob (and take long lunches as well), or sucking off of Uncle Sam's sugar teat and do not want that contract terminated.

There are, however, lots of hard working goobs and I have great admiration and respect for them. Much of DC, however, is a jobs program. It is the definition of workfare.

Now, if you'll pardon me, there's a nipple here that requires some of my attention.

Welp, they did it! Bailed another one out. They talk about the taxpayers (which are the working class people) to foot this huge "invoice". What's going to happen when there is no more money to fix their bad business decisions when people have lost and are losing their jobs left and right and have to pay for the banking mess. The million dollar question is, or should I say "trillion dollar" question is; Why don't the huge profit making corporate monsters foot the bill,for instance the oil companies! After all they have all the money and the marbles.

Yep, they did. Another bailout. And it IS sort of pathetic, how we all keep footing the bill. There is some small comfort in the fact that all the morons and lying buttheads who let the thing get this bad are on the beach. But you've got to think that they're not really suffering all that badly. Anybody know what the severance package for quasi-government agencies is like? Beyond that, I'll be honest with you. As much as a bailout seems like perpetuation of a bad cycle, the prospect of NO bailout is too terrifying to consider, I think. People need loans. The credit institutions -- particularly the really big ones -- shouldn't fail, as much as it might please us to see the ruin fall on the guilty. It would also fall on a lot of innocent, and I always figure it's better if the innocent survive, even if it spares a few of the guilty.